In what has become an odd sort of once-every-22-year tradition, my Dad bought me a new sewing machine last year. (An awesome new sewing machine, a Pfaff Ambition 1.0.) He'd bought the previous machine for me, some 22 years prior. A metal body Kenmore 12 Stitch, a real workhorse of a machine. It was in great shape, but had developed an odd behavior that would require a full overhaul, to the tune of around $250.
With that news, I decided to wait, and put that money towards a new machine, perhaps after getting a tax refund. To make a long story short, Mom was visiting around this time. We'd been looking at machines together, and when Dad got wind of this he immediately said, "Well, I'll buy her a new one."
He's warned me to take good care of this one, because I'm not getting another one for another 22 years. "Deal," I told him.
Yet, I couldn't get rid of the old machine. It's been sitting in my closet for a year. Somewhat randomly, I stumbled across Coffee Creek Quilters, a program that teaches women in prison to sew and quilt. Sometimes I take the many skills I've learned for granted; but I can imagine how powerful the experience of learning to sew, learning to create beautiful things, and sharing those with a community could be. Those who complete the program during their time there will be given a "starter kit" to take home with them upon release from the facility. These kits include reliable refurbished machines and basic sewing tools and supplies to make their own quilt.
I talked to the organization about making a donation; they were happy to receive it. But I thought I had to get it fixed, first. I approached Montevilla Sewing Centers, where I'd purchased my new machine, asking for a deal on the repair given the destination of the machine -- and they told me they do all the repairs for the program for free, so just donate the machine! Awesome!
The box contains the manual, all the original accessories and parts, the extra feet I'd purchased for it, and some quality sewing basics that I'm donating along with the machine. (The box will be full after a trip to Jo Anns tomorrow.)
So, my little metal baby, you're going to get a new lease on life. I hope you can be a good, solid friend for someone who needs one. Make beautiful things together.